Sometimes blessings can be found in unexpected places. We moved to Sinton, TX nearly 2 years ago. Moving to a new town can be a challenge. Moving with teenage boys makes it even more of a challenge, but one of the things that has made this challenge less challenging has been Whataburger.
For those of you who are not from Texas, Whataburger is a “native born” hamburger joint that, at least here in South Texas, can be found in every small town. It is a great place for a fast food fix that is open 24 hours a day.
If you have read anything else I’ve written, you probably know that I’m not one to give reviews on products so you probably know that this article isn’t really about Whataburger at all. But, take the challenge of moving teenage boys to a new town, add in some Whataburger and some amazing new friends, now we’ve got something to write about.
Every Sunday night after our worship assembly, a group of folks meet up at Whataburger. Sometimes there are just a few, sometimes the group can be quite large. Always the group is enjoyable to be with. While we don’t go every Sunday evening, we go every chance we get. I’m always glad we went. One of the reasons I’m so glad is my boys.
Like I said at the beginning, moving to a new town is challenging. Moving with teenage boys is very challenging. This group of Christians who meet at Whataburger on Sunday evening have made the transition easier. My boys have gotten to know, on a more personal level than they could otherwise, some of the wisest, kindest people in our congregation. Did I mention that most of the people who go to Whataburger on Sunday evening are…shall we say…older. In fact, the boys are, by far, the youngest ones in the group. In fact, there are nights that Danny and I are younger than all but the boys.
Now, why would I insist my boys sit in a restaurant, bored out of their minds, while a bunch of old folks from church visit about whatever old folks visit about? That’s just it. They aren’t bored. I don’t insist they go. They aren’t just listening. They are included in the conversation and enjoy the company as much as the rest of us. Most times, the conversation in our car on the way home revolves around the stories that were told at Whataburger that night.
What’s the big deal? Why would I spend time writing about this and why would I ask you to spend time reading this? Because there is more going on than a casual meal at a local fast food restaurant. Through the years, we have done our best to find ways for our boys to be around other Christians. We have sent them to camp. We have driven long distances to attend gospel meetings and singings. We have had people in our homes. We have accepted invitations to other people’s homes.
Sometimes, many times, it has been difficult to find the time, the energy, the money to attend these events. Sometimes it has interfered with our school schedule to attend these events. Sometimes we have stayed up way past the kids’ (and our) bed times to attend these events. Sometimes we have had things we would rather do but we know how important it is for our kids and for ourselves to spend as much time with other Christians as possible, so we go.
It makes me sad when I see families who do not jump at the chance to expose their children to these kinds of situations. Over and over again, I see families who are invited to gospel meetings, singings, home Bible studies, casual gatherings in people’s homes, and yes, even Whataburger say, “No”. The kids have home work. The kids have other plans. The kids have school in the morning. The reasons go on and on but the results are the same. Their kids are being denied the opportunity to build relationships with fellow Christians. They are being taught that time spent with others or doing other things is more important than time spent with Christians.
When we moved to Sinton, we knew that some of the opportunities to be around Christians that we had grown accustomed to would not be available here. What we didn’t know but what we hoped for were other opportunities. Whataburger is just one of these opportunities that we have here but it is special because it is the one constant, every week activity outside of our regular assembly. To those of you who go the extra mile to get to know and encourage young people, my young people, thank you…from the bottom of my heart, thank you.
Wherever you are at, find opportunities for your children to be around other Christians…Christians of all ages. Make every effort to participate as often as possible. If there isn’t anything in your area available, create your own. Have the young people in your home. Have a singing in your home. Have a Bible study in your home. Go to area gospel meetings. Attend a singing in the area. Find yourself a Whataburger and invite others to join you.